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Lions Beat Underdogs in Shootout

Avi Friedman
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Avi Friedman

Week 10 of the IFL’s 2013-14 season had a full slate, with four games taking place all over the country. On Thursday night, the Jerusalem “ISD” Kings and Judean Rebels blew their respective opponents out of the water, 80-0 and 76-0. On Friday in Kiryat Yam, the Jerusalem “Big Blue” Lions prevailed in a wild shoot-out over the Haifa “Nemo’s” Underdogs and came away with a 76-45 victory, and on Saturday night the Tel Aviv “Hotel Gilgal” Pioneers secured a 44-20 victory over the Petah Tikva “Monte Carlo” Troopers.

The Lions traveled north for a match-up between teams jockeying for play-off positioning, and came away with a 76-45 shootout victory over the host Underdogs.

Matan Lavi took the first play from scrimmage 31 yards for a Lion TD on a Big Blue patented fake-pass-draw play right up the gut. After a Haifa punt, Hillel Goldstein punched in a Lion TD, running behind big Viggy Moore, but was immediately answered by Haifa QB Matt Kauffman, who found Nimrod Smith for a 28-yard score to cut the lead to 16-6. The Lions responded immediately with a TD pass from Schiff to Mishaan, and just three plays later Binyamin Schultz intercepted Kauffman and took it 45 yards to the house for a 28-6 lead.

The game looked like it might turn into a blowout, but Haifa ended the first half with three scores. First, Kauffman found Moshe Genon for a score, and after Niv Medlinger picked off Schiff, Kauffman found Smith for a touchdown to narrow the Lions lead to 36-25. Schiff found Mishaan for their second TD connection of the day, but Kauffman found Smith again for a touchdown, making the halftime score 44-32.

The second half started on the right foot for Haifa as Kauffman connected with Matan Fourier on a 45-yard catch-and-run up the sideline, and suddenly it was a one-score game at 44-39, but it wasn’t to last. Schiff and Mishaan connected again, and after Jerome Wojtalik intercepted Kauffman’s pass, Hillel Goldstein punched in another score for a 58-39 lead, and Kauffman took a safety in the end-zone after a bad snap to make the score 60-39. Haifa would get no closer.

Schiff finished 8/15 for 142 yards, two interceptions and four touchdowns, all of which were caught by Effi Mishaan as he finished with six catches for 102 yards. Tiran Koren and Matan Lavi had 64 and 53 yards rushing respectively, and each scored a touchdown, and Hillel Goldstein had two TDs on three goal-line carries.

Kauffman finished 15/31 for 243 yards, six TDs and two interceptions, doing most of his damage together with Nimrod Smith, who caught seven balls for 115 yards and four TDs. Fourier and Genon each added a receiving TD, and Duke-Fearnley rushed for another.

The Pioneers and Troopers faced off on Saturday night in Ramle and played a tight first half, but the Pioneers’ offense took off in the third frame and the veteran club secured a 44-20 victory.

Pioneer QB Ronny Moscona finished 9/15 for 104 yards, three TDs and one INT plus a rushing TD. Amit Militanu had two catches for two TDs, while Daniel Ben-Zvi finished with two catches and one TD, and Noam Dalal and Josh Henry also scored.

Trooper QB Garrett Moore finished 20/37 for 179 yards and three TDs, two to former Pioneer Dvir Argouan and one to EJ Glatt.

The weekend kicked off with an anticipated blowout of the winless Silverbacks by the undefeated Rebels, fresh off of their impressive victory over the previously undefeated Hammers. The visiting Judeans held the hosts to 21 net yards and two first downs, while never punting and scoring on every possession except for one.

Dani Eastman led the Rebels on offense and defense, with three carries for 73 yards and three TDs, and also passed for one, adding seven tackles and two interceptions, including a pick-6. Weintraub caught two TDs, Avrami Farkas passed for two, Jayes Kine caught one and passed for one, and Shai Brill, Ari Levin and Israel Barkany each accounted for one.

Silverback QB Ido Eisikovits finished 6/20 for 30 yards and four INTs, and Gal Dagan led the ground attack with 29 yards.

The Kings hosted the Black Swarm Thursday night, looking to build off of a 80-6 win over the North Stars.

The Kings’ offense came out a little slow in the first quarter, only scoring six points, but turned it around in the second quarter where they lit up the scoreboard for 46 points, tying a league record. All the Kings’ second-quarter points involved quarterback Zack Summy as he scored three consecutive rushing TDs to start the quarter, then finished it off with three straight passing TDs to three different receivers.

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